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Archive for February, 2010

A quick education on shirts

Thursday, February 25th, 2010


Some great tips to identify quality and proper fit in shirts.
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A good press at home

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

Every morning as I go through my routine eventually it comes time to get dressed and this almost always requires me to iron at least one item.  For years I simply used a cheap iron that I had purchased and seemed to do the job just fine.  My only complaints were that it took a while to heat, didn’t hold much water, and that it had only basic shutoff features, in case it was left on.  Eventually this iron stopped working and it was time to purchase a new one.

Having visited friends recently and borrowed their quality iron I had been inspired to trade up as theirs was head and shoulders above mine.  It may seem to many (it did to me) that an iron is an iron and they all produce the same result.  This, as I would learn, is not the case.

Iron

High-end irons are no more equals to low-end irons as Lamborghinis are equals to Toyotas.  Yes both may perform the same basic function i.e. get you from one place to another or flatten out wrinkles, but the experience and the time it takes to perform these basic function is very different.

My new iron, which admittedly cost about three times as much as my old one, is packed with touches that make it perform better contributing to the superior experience. These include:

–       High number of steam holes

–       Large capacity water tank

–       Quick heat time

–       Vertical Steam

–       Tapered point

With my new iron in hand no wrinkle or crease stands a chance in slowing my morning routine.  The quality iron not only produces results faster but it also produces a better result.  For me there was no downside to this investment.

For some reviews on irons Click Here.

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Matter of Opinion: The simple gastronome

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

If ever you need, or want, to cook for another individual I feel every man should be able to offer something of quality.  What I mean is that every man should have a handful of dishes that they can cook by memory or close to it.julia-child

There are few things that can impress or satisfy people more than quality food.  As I have never met someone who doesn’t enjoy eating, having a small catalog of recipes that you can draw from provides you with the ability to satiate your guests or guest in a variety of scenarios. roast chicken

If throughout your life you have consistently failed in your culinary endeavors I still say, “push on”.  There are dishes that require very little skill and those that cannot be learned without a little trial and error.

As far as what sort of dishes you should learn, try and learn some dishes in different categories.  For example: a few things I pride myself on being able to cook are barbecued ribs and pork shoulder, German pretzels, a great piece of salmon, a roast chicken, and molten chocolate cake.  Knowing a variety of dishes allows you to provide for a more diverse collection of situations and people.pretzel

It is also important to note that I have learned all of these recipes and techniques myself by simply doing some research and practicing them.  Some great resources to find and learn recipes and techniques are the Internet and cooking shows.  Much can be gained through the collection of cookbooks but I recommend exhausting what you don’t have to pay for first.

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Fortify your defences

Friday, February 5th, 2010

Most readers of Classic Timeless most likely know that I view a man’s wardrobe as an investment in himself.  Just as a man must protect himself he must protect the investments that support him.  All too often items in wardrobes are found with holes, off smells, dust, etc.  These outcomes, while usually only occurring during poorly conceived offseason storage, should also be considered a threat when clothes are in use and stored in a closet.closet

It isn’t necessarily hard to prevent any of these from happening if you just take some simple precautions.

Insects: For most, moths will be the worst of your worries when it comes to protecting your clothes.  They will eat the all too familiar holes out of wool and generally will feed on any natural fibers with animal origins.  Aside from the various types of wool this includes hair/fur and silks.  In order to prevent an attack first keep the area where you store your clothing clean.  Vacuuming regularly will help remove larvae and eggs that may be present and what is collected should be bagged and removed from your home immediately .  You should also incorporate deterrents such as mothballs, cedar, or herbal repellents.  I prefer to use cedar because I find it easy to incorporate into my closet, in hangers for example, and because I find its smell pleasant.  When storing clothes for the offseason, do so in airtight containers and with the addition of a little bit of a repellent.  Keep in mind that insects are attracted to food stains and may target these areas if so have everything cleaned before storage.

Moisture: Depending on where you live you may find that you are dealing with either extreme humidity or dryness.  In a humid climate I recommend purchasing a closet dehumidifier.  Here is a link with reviews of a number of different types of dehumidifiers.

By controlling humidity level you will also prevent the growth of molds and other sources of off odors that can occur in such a musty environment.  Leather is also very susceptible to high levels of moisture and will benefit from a dehumidifier.

For very dry environments make sure that leathers are properly cleaned and conditioned on a regular basis (see: Maintaining your shoes) .  This will prevent these items from drying and cracking.

Further precautions you can take are to store suits, which are not on a constant rotation, in suit bags as well as keep shoes in felt bags.  This has the double effect of keeping them clean of dust and helping to keep them bug free.

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Send the right message

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

I’m sure that most (if not all) of you own a cell phone and almost as many of you that use a cell are avid users of texts, email, web browsing, etc.  Today it is common to see people totally engrossed in their phones.  They will be clicking away oblivious to the world around them.  I have even experienced people walk right into me because they were too busy with their phone to look ahead of them.  These habits, while not auspicious, pale in comparison to the committing of these acts while conversing or interacting with others.

I’m sure many of you have been in a conversation with someone and there is a ring, beep or buzz that has caused the other side to inadvertently remove their phone and click away in response to whatever form of communication they just received.

This may not seem like much of a transgression, and to many it may not be, but done habitually only shows those around you that they are not important to you and/or you have little interest in the interaction.

Due to the growing importance of staying connected to those in our lives it is inevitable that at some point you will receive a message while conversing with someone.

For those moments I recommend the following:

Set it to vibrate: If neither you or the person you are talking to hear the alert and only the person the message was intended for is aware of it then there is no harm done.  If your ringer has been left on then quickly silence it and then apologize.

Ask Permission: If you are expecting some sort of important news (loved one in surgery, oncology test results, call from potential employer, etc.) then ask the person you are talking to if they mind if you answer/respond.  Any reasonable person will not be insulted with a quick and general explanation.  I feel that this should be done before the fact and not as a sheepish apology after.

The flip side to being courteous and respectful of other peoples time is that in a world where interruptions such as these come more and more frequently it becomes a powerful statement to those you interact with that your time currently belongs to them.

These few points may seem obvious to many but it still is such a common occurrence.

By doing little things to show that you value those around you shows good style and from good style comes class.

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The Value of Tweed

Monday, February 1st, 2010

Tweed sport coats have in the past been associated with academics or old men but today I feel they are ready for their due redemption.  Tweed was first produced in Scotland and Ireland and its durable and warm nature makes it ideal for country wear while shooting or hunting.  The best tweeds are Harris and Donegal manufactured in Scotland and Ireland respectively.  The ability of tweed  to add true character to any mans wardrobe makes it invaluable and no man should consider theirs complete until it includes at least one piece of tweed.  These days good tweeds can be a little harder to find off the peg, requiring some searching or some tailoring. tweed jacket One British clothier known for their country wear is Cordings.  There catalog includes numerous tweeds in addition to other fine items.  I personally prefer a tweed jacket with leather buttons as I feel this adds additional character to the jacket.

Best worn during the fall and winter and when paired with cords your tweed will help seal out the biting wind.

Because tweed tends to have a considerable amount of visual texture, consider how busy the other articles of clothing you are wearing are in order to achieve a proper balance.

While tweed is not appropriate for a formal occasion it will always work well on the weekend or during a casual encounter.

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